Let’s start at the very beginning …
A very nice place to start …
a.k.a. How I got started in swing dancing …
The abbreviated version:
The 1998 Gap Khakis Swing Commerical was my first exposure to swing dancing.
Okay..and here’s the longer version:
I grew up watching musicals… broadway shows. I was watching them on TV or I was watching them in person. My parents were huge fans of musicals and my dad had season tickets to off-Broadway type theaters up in Seattle. So I grew up watching the greats:
Seven Brides For Seven Brothers
West Side Story
My Fair Lady
and many many more …
And we watched “Singin’ In The Rain” probably 2 or 3 times a year.
Not to mention on road trips, my dad would be playing soundtracks to all these musicals all up and down the coastline (we road-tripped to Reno, NV and Disneyland, CA every year).
That being said, I guess you could say I grew up on all the great musicals. So I was aware of all this great dancing and choreography.
Fast forward: I became a huge fan of swing music just from hearing the songs in commercials (most notably: Sing Sing Sing from Chips Ahoy) and bought a few different swing CDs (The BBC Big Band compilations were my first swing cds I owned – cheap and a lot of great music, these are the ones you’d find in your local drugstore).
So being a fan dancing in general (jazz, show, etc) and a fan of swing music, I was IN AWE when I saw the 1998 Gap Khakis Swing Commercial..
I had NO IDEA that people actually DANCED to this great music I had become a fan of!!
I was charmed
I was bewitched
And that was that for a few months …. Until I found out later that regular people … REGULAR PEOPLE like you and me, were dancing this dance. Not just those professionals I saw on TV.
But yes, you could say the Gap Commercial was the very beginning to my exposure to swing dancing!